Joanne Holbrook Patton. Mrs. Patton passed away recently, and we’ll have a formal obituary in an upcoming E-News. She was the wife of Major General (Ret.) George Smith Patton, the 39th Commander of the 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment, while it was in Vietnam. Mrs. Patton was preceded in death by her husband, and also by her eldest son George Smith Patton, Jr., who passed away earlier this year. Mrs. Patton was a recipient of the Noble Patron of Armor medallion by the U.S. Cavalry and Armor Association, and she was a great friend and supporter of the Blackhorse Association. We send our condolences to her surviving family and friends. Rest In Peace Mrs. Patton.
The hiking days in the Wildflecken military training area are always a special event that attracts the masses. This year, 5,300 women and men were out and about on the three routes offered around Dammersfeld.
Rhön – “Where else do I have the opportunity to hike on paths where entry is otherwise prohibited?” Axel Dehler from Kalbach explains his participation. Most people are like him. The license plates in the completely parked Oberweißenbrunn, where the start and finish were, prove it. The hikers came from Würzburg via Schluechtern to Bad Hersfeld, especially many from the Fulda district.
A total of 5,300 women and men took advantage of the offers, said captain and commander Enrico Langhärig. He was very happy with this number.
Even if the weather didn’t always play along and there were a few showers – the hikers were offered a lot. Right at the beginning it was possible to visit the Schwedenstern. During the Thirty Years’ War, this fortification at the Schwedenschanze was used to monitor the route from Oberweißenbrunn to Gersfeld.
Only a few kilometers farther, the participants pass the area where the village of Kippelbach existed until 1938. In the course of the construction of the military training area, the residents were resettled and the buildings were gradually dismantled or destroyed. Today a memorial stone points to the existence of Kippelbach.
Hikers could get information about duds, which there are in heaps at the military training area, at a stand. A US Army camp has been recreated right next to it. The Americans operated the Wildflecken military training area from 1953 to 1994. Historical jeeps and trucks as well as replica tents with inventory give an insight into how the soldiers used to live during the exercises.